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Social Networking Postings: Views from School Principals

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Published: 2012-04-20

Authors

Marlynn M. Griffin

Curriculum, Foundations, and Reading P.O. Box 8144 Georgia Southern University Statesboro, GA 30458

Robert L. Lake

Curriculum, Foundations, and Reading P.O. Box 8144 Georgia Southern University Statesboro, GA 30458

Keywords: Administrator Attitudes; Preservice Teacher Education; Social Networks

Abstract

Numerous recent media accounts indicate that teachers are being fired, put on probation, or otherwise censured because of information found on their social networking sites (SNS). While the literature in business, psychology, and pharmacy shows initial investigations of the impact of SNS information on hiring decisions, this area has not been investigated in the field of education. Data from pre-service teachers’ SNS were compiled into a 51-item questionnaire and K-12 school principals rated each statement on its likelihood to influence a hiring decision if it were found on the SNS of a teacher applying for a position at his or her school. The statements included on the questionnaire included sexual talk, swearing, violent language, references to drugs and/or alcohol use, and language that could be considered pejorative to individuals with disabilities, persons of color and/or homosexual individuals. The findings of this preliminary study indicate that of the 51 statements, 28 had average ratings in the moderate-to-significant impact on hiring decision range and 22 had average ratings in the minor-to-moderate impact on hiring decision range. Only one item of the 51 fell in the no impact-to-minor impact on hiring decision range. Findings are discussed in relation to professional dispositions, categories of information that may influence hiring decisions, and internet use policies. Implications based on the data from this study include the need to develop state and university policies for SNS use. Finally, the results of this study indicate that further research into hiring administrators’ use of data from SNS in hiring decisions is warranted.

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Author Biographies

Marlynn M. Griffin

Curriculum, Foundations, and Reading P.O. Box 8144 Georgia Southern University Statesboro, GA 30458

Marlynn M. Griffin is Professor of Educational Psychology in the Department of Curriculum, Foundations, and Reading at Georgia Southern University, and teaches undergraduate courses in assessment and classroom management and graduate courses in research.  She coordinates an initial field placement for pre-service teachers and is interested in issues related to pre-service teacher dispositions and professionalism, including the use of social networking sites.

Robert L. Lake

Curriculum, Foundations, and Reading P.O. Box 8144 Georgia Southern University Statesboro, GA 30458

Robert Lake is an assistant professor in the Department of Curriculum, Foundations, and Reading at Georgia Southern University and teaches both undergraduate and graduate courses in multicultural education from both a local and global perspective.  He is the author of Vygotsky on Education Primer (2012).  He also edited and contributed to two books of letters for Teachers College Press.  One is titled Dear Maxine:  Letters from the Unfinished Conversation with Maxine Greene (2010).  The other volume is called Dear Nel: Opening the Circles of Care (Letters to Nel Noddings) (2012).

PDF

Published: 2012-04-20

How to Cite

Griffin, M. M., & Lake, R. L. (2012). Social Networking Postings: Views from School Principals. Education Policy Analysis Archives, 20, 11. https://doi.org/10.14507/epaa.v20n11.2012